An Experimental Investigation of Flapping Wing Propulsion for Micro Air Vehicles

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  • ISBN-13: 9781423551676
  • ISBN: 1423551672
  • Publisher: Storming Media



Flapping-wing propulsion is studied experimentally through thrust measurements and flow visualization. The objective of the research is to provide further insight into the aerodynamics of flapping-wing micro air vehicles (MAVs) . Experimental work is conducted in the NPS 1.5 m x 1.5 m in-draft wind tunnel. A previously constructed model is suspended by thin wires and is used to measure the thrust performance of the flapping-wing MAV. For this experiment, the model is tested in four configurations; three with varying wing mount stiffness and the fourth with an articulated pitch mechanism. Thrust is indirectly determined using a laser range-finder to measure stream-wise displacement of the model. Three methods of flow visualization are attempted to gain further insight into the flow-field around the MAV. First tufts are placed on and around the model to identify the flow-field Second, a smoke rake placed outside the tunnel is used to route smoke into the test section. Thirdly, a smoke wire system is used to produce smoke in the test section. Experimental results are compared with flow visualization results and previous experimental and numerical work.Naval Postgraduate School Monterey CA is the author of 'An Experimental Investigation of Flapping Wing Propulsion for Micro Air Vehicles' with ISBN 9781423551676 and ISBN 1423551672.

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